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Dear Reader: Happy Holidays!

by Vaun Thygerson
Contributing writer and mother of three

Billy Joel once said, “I think music in itself is healing. It’s an explosive expression of humanity. It’s something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music.” 

I think music is all of this and so much more. Music is magical! I live in a musical household, not always the music of my choosing thanks to my 13-year-old DJ, but the upside is that we have a constant soundtrack playing to accentuate our lives. I played the trumpet in my youth, and I can’t carry a tune, but it doesn’t stop me from belting out the lyrics to my favorite tunes! 

My husband plays piano and guitar, my daughter sings, and both boys play piano; and the younger one also plays ukulele and guitar. But, what mostly dominates Alexa at my house is my son’s rap and pop hits, many of which he’s made his own versions using FL Studio. 

In fact, music is so inspirational that it motivates my younger son to perform. My husband and boys recently ran the 5K “Running Universal” at Universal Studios, and it turned out to have a lot of hills. When my younger son beat his brother and dad in the race, he said it was because of his musical playlist, including Lil Nas X. He said, “I was thinking about walking up the hill, and I thought, ‘Nah! This music is too nice. I gotta run!’” 

Most of the time I concede to his musical whims, but during this time of year I control the proverbial dial. I get to listen to more of the music I like in the guise of Christmas Carols – Elvis Presley, Harry Connick Jr, Vince Gill, and Nat King Cole, among others. I honestly think my favorite part of the Holiday Season is the music. KCFM agrees that music is an important part of family time this Christmas, and continues to produce its annual Christmas Songbook. This is a great chance for you to sing along to all your favorite Carols. 

This entire issue is dedicated to the Christmas theme, “The Night Before Christmas.” You’ll find all your favorite articles throughout the following pages, they’ll just have a new festive name to reflect the season’s spirit. For example, Refrigerator Door on page 6 becomes “Vision of Sugar Plums,” and Vital Signs on page 8 becomes “By the Chimney with Care.”

For this month’s Happy Mama, or aka “Mama in Her Kerchief,” Janelle Capra writes an article entitled, “Make Your Word Count in 2019,” on page 17. She writes about how this year, as we end a decade, she has chosen a word for her 2020 mantra, “Abundance.” She gives five tips on how you can make your word count. What’s your word for 2020? Share your comments on social media using the #hellohappymama.  

Special thanks to Mrs. Melissa Richert and Principal Tom Board for allowing me to visit my younger son’s Farm to Table class at Rosedale Middle School. In the article, “Farm to (Classroom) Table,” on page 10, I write about how this new class teaches students aspects of the farming process to encourage their desire for healthy lifestyles and healthy food choices. Each student is given tasks and complete stewardship over their very own tree. They take care of these plants and trees and use the produce to make delicious food in their kitchen. Thanks to my visit, I was able to see pomegranates go from the farm to the table, and they were delicious! 

This Holiday Season, as you’re bustling from event to event, shopping, and wrapping presents, don’t forget to turn on those classic Carols. Singing along not only will lower your stress but will help improve your mood. And, with the enclosed KCFM songbook, you can know all the right lyrics. Music is magical and Christmas music is the best of all the genres! 

Happy Happy Happy Holidays!

-Vaun Thygerson

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Tags: Parenting

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